Jerry Sandusky was sentenced to no less than 30 years to no more than 60 years in prison by Judge John Cleland today in the Centre County Courthouse, in front of a courtroom filled with family, friends and those who charged the former Penn State football coach with abusing them.
Cleland recognized prior to the sentencing that presenting a sentence that would require Sandusky to spend “centuries in prison” would be unrealistic in speaking to the 68-year-old man, though, by law he would be permitted to do so.
Cleland’s sentence was, in short, a sentencing of life in prison, he said.
Before reading the sentencing, Cleland also addressed those who charged Sandusky with abusing them. He explained that they should not feel shame in regards to the assaults they suffered, as they were only children.
“His conduct was no fault of your own,” Cleland said. “As adults, you have now come forward to hold him accountable and it is for your courage and not for your assault for he will be remembered.”
Sandusky will be permitted to spend the next 10 days at the Centre County Correctional Facility, but will then be transported to the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections, State Correctional Institution in Camp Hill.
Prior to his sentencing, Sandusky read a statement that he prepared, speaking of his silence thus far in the trial process and addressing the family that has continued to stand by him.
“I’ve lived long enough to cherish many memories,” Sandusky said, remembering the card he has hanging in his prison cell with the word “hope.” “We will continue to try. We will endure, to hold our heads up, to face what we must, to hope for help. We’re going to smile[ ...] because I’ve always smiled through the pain.”
Sandusky was found guilty of 45 counts of sexual abuse in late June.
Read Wednesday's edition of the Daily Collegian for more information.